City of Burnaby planning to increase hotel and short-term rental tax to 3%

City of Burnaby planning to increase hotel and short-term rental tax to 3%

  • Business
  • Policy
  • Real Estate
December 15, 2020

City of Vancouver and Surrey had announced their 2021 tax plan and their tax increase on property tax, vacancy tax, and per parcel tax last week. It is the City of Burnaby’s turn to join the tax war. City of Burnaby is planning to increase a one percentage point to its municipal and regional district tax (MRDT) to 3%. If approved, your hotel rooms and Airbnbs will get slightly more expensive.

The MRDT is a tax specially designed for the hotel industry and its funds will be used to promote local tourism. However, it changed in 2018 due to the province’s housing crisis. The government expanded the use of MRDT to fund local housing initiatives. It is up to Tourism Burnaby and City of Burnaby to decide what portion of the fund will go towards affordable housing.

The pandemic made the situation dire. We already know developers were receiving less funding from the municipalities due to emergency use of fund to provide housing incentive for renters and finding homes for those who lost their income.

According city staff report, tax from the hotel portion will go towards promoting local tourism and short-term rentals such as Airbnb and VBRO will be allocated for housing purposes.

“In 2019, the 2% MRDT rate generated $1.69 million, including $1.38 million from hotels and motels and $316,000 from short-term rentals. That’s a roughly $600,000 surplus, with Tourism Burnaby’s 2019 expenditures at $1.09 million. Coun. Pietro Calendino said the tax hike will allow the city to attract more events and tourism to the city.”

The additional one percent will bring in another $150,000 from short-term rental according to 2019’s data. This year’s tax revenue will much lower given that the pandemic and travel restriction. The tax is expected to be a long-term revenue that will help with tourism promotion and affordable housing pilot programs.

The City of Burnaby made a wise decision on how to increase tax. Although it does not provide instant revenue boost, the City of Burnaby is using tourism money to help with local difficulties. Surrey’s two councillor recently resigned to protest the $300 parcel tax. The fixed rate will tax condo owner harder than those who owns multi-million-dollar homes.

Now the COVID vaccine is on the way, it is likely that the economy will soon go on to recovery mode and once tourism is back the additional one percent will bring ample of money for the municipality.

Yoyoe Lu

Founder and managing principal

Yoyoe is the founder and managing principal of Claridge. She was ranked one of Vancouver’s top real estate agents. Currently, Yoyoe is our strategic mind leading the team to success. Her affiliation with industry professionals put her ahead of our competitors. Yoyoe is also part of the Rotary Club of West Vancouver, Canadian Homebuilders Association, Urban Land Institute and Urban Development Institute.

Ashley Osborn

Development Site and Investment Specialist

Ashely is our lead land and investment advisor. He has been consistently featured in the annual top 100 real estate deals of British Columbia ranking. With over $15 billion worth of domestic and international real estate investments under his belt, Ashley is one of the top agents in the province. His 20 years of real estate and financial experience make him a master in negotiation and acquisition.

Patricia Wong Chong

Investment and Leasing Specialist

Patricia is our investment and retail leasing advisor. Her experience in brokerage and market research analysis has helped her comprise over $550 million in commercial real estate transactions. Patricia is responsible, detail-oriented, and professional. Her strong work ethic and positive attitude have led her to surpass all her competitors.

Schumann Li

Land Assembly & Residential Specialist

Schumann is a top-producing realtor in the Lower Mainland with more than 30 years’ experience. Over the years, Schumann hasn’t just garnered awards, but the trust of countless customers. Her clients continually refer to her outstanding professionalism, work ethic and poise.

Wendy Kaip

Sales Associate

Whether it’s decoding city policies, strategizing relocation plans, home sellers looking for a trustworthy advisor to unlock their property’s maximum potential- Wendy is here to help every step along the way.

Prior to real estate, Wendy spent over a decade in the mining industry with her attention to detail, keen negotiation skills, extensive network and strong reputation for getting the deal done, bringing endless value to her current real estate clients.

Whether you are thinking about selling to a developer, or have more questions about commercial real estate, Wendy invites you to connect, to see how she can utilize her expertise and team to help create value and maximize your real estate goals.

Simon Chan

Managing Broker

Simon is the managing broker of Claridge Real Estate Advisors Inc. His expertise has helped our agents resolve many difficulties. Not only is Simon knowledgeable with real estate legislation, but he is also very detail orientated. With Simon on our team, our agents are confident to conduct businesses and will always get the support they need to ensure they’re not walking on dirty water.

Frank Zhou


As the analyst of the company, my key job is to help brokers to find marketable clients and locate feasible development sites by collecting and analyzing up-to-date market transaction data and conducting target market and property-level research. Meanwhile, I am also in charge of maintaining the company’s property database to ensure accuracy and comprehensiveness and continuously upgrading the level of knowledge by staying up to date with hot topics, and market trends, and incorporating findings into everyday work. Before joining the company, I worked for CR Group as a real estate investment manager, focusing on capital raising, equity and debt financing, acquisition and renovation. I hold 2 master’s degrees, one in Housing Management and the other in Economics.